Career Transitions Forum

The Career Transitions Forum (CTF) is a unique series of lectures, presentations, and networking activities designed to support professionals who are transitioning in their careers.

Professionals from recruitment firms, corporations, and the local community will present a broad array of job search strategies and tips, with a different topic presented each week. New participants can join any week.  

Free Career Advising

Career Advising is available from our prestigious team of business executives for those who have attended at least one CTF session and preferably who have completed an HRD resume class. 

To schedule an appointment, submit the CTF Career Advising Request form, which is available at CTF meetings on Thursdays from 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM at Trinity Baptist Church in Raleigh.

Here are details on our current panel of advisors:

Al Rankin: has been involved as a leader and/or advisor of CTF and its predecessors since 2008. Over a long career, he headed corporate communications for Marriott International and 3 other NYSE companies in the Mid-Atlantic and Texas. His experience ranges from branding and media relations to stakeholder and crisis communications, including speechwriting and non-profit development. In 2016, he joined Fonville Morisey Realty as a Realtor. He holds B.J. and M.A. degrees from the University of Missouri School of Journalism.

Peter Large: Peter has been working with Career Transitions since 2012 assisting people with resume reviews, networking strategies, and interview preparation. Peter is a retired IBM Project Executive, where he held various sales and sales management positions prior to serving as Practice Leader for a software integration services business focused on the retail sector. Peter has expertise in business management, customer relationships and project management. He has a BS degree in Engineering from the University of Toronto.

Joy Hodge: a thought leader in career and talent management, with over 20 years’ experience designing innovative strategies, products and solutions to boost the effectiveness of leaders, managers, employees, and organizations. Joy directly impacted business results, organizational effectiveness, employee engagement and retention at Fidelity Investments and GlaxoSmithKline, and gained deep experience in managing HRD product development teams at Global Knowledge. She has advanced degrees in Adult Education and Learning and Development from NC State University.

Prashant Pandya: is a Senior Financial Advisor and Certified Financial Planner who helps guide individuals, families, trusts, and business owners towards achieving their financial goals and dreams. Areas of expertise include investments, taxes, retirement, insurance and estate planning. Prashant is also a Certified Plan Fiduciary Advisor who can assist with 401K retirement plans and a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor. Prior to working in financial services, Prashant worked with IBM in various hardware and software architecture, consulting and management roles.

Lara Gardner: is Technical Group Recruiting Manager at BB&T and served in a similar role at IBM. She manages a team of 4-6 technical recruiters and has direct experience with recruiting and hiring, as well as setting recruiting strategies and serving as the executive recruiter for senior technical leadership positions within BB&T.

Claire Boland: Claire has held numerous HR leadership roles at both small and large fortune 500 companies within banking, life sciences, and manufacturing arenas. She has worked extensively in talent identification and employee development to help develop employee strengths, skill gaps, and development opportunities. Currently, she splits her time between HR consulting with global companies and with Right Management, where she works with candidates in transition.


Schedule of Events

Mar 7 | Harold Zeishner | Aligning with “Best in Class” Recruiters

A key element of job search is establishing partnerships with a select group of GREAT recruiters who are well-established in your area of expertise at with the companies you are targeting for your next role. Choosing the right recruiters and building productive relationships with them involves understanding the nature of their business, the scope of their work, and how it connects to actual opportunity. At the session, Harold Zeishner will share his insights with us about aligning yourself with “Best in Class” recruiters and making them work for you!

Harold is passionate about providing talent solutions to corporate clients by helping them identify, attract and retain "Best in Class" talent. He has led teams of account managers and directed recruiting efforts for various search firms in the RTP area. For the last 10 years, he has focused on delivering highly skilled, "in demand" talent (typically with a spotlight on technology) and has established the Triangle Area Analytics Group "TAAG" and Triangle Agile Professional Series, "TAPS".

Mar 14 | Trinity Gregor | Cast Your Net, the Power of Networking

Tired of sending hundreds of resumes and getting no response? Exhausted by going to networking events and getting no traction? Did you meet someone new but don’t know how to leverage that relationship? Come learn how to be a connector and not get stuck in the trap of being a “professional networker.” You will leave this session with new connections and tools you can apply immediately to get REAL results from your networking efforts. The power of networking is limitless if you do it right!

Trinity Gregor is a REALTOR® and has built her business exclusively by referral. Her background includes growing a boutique real estate firm and recruiting, coaching, and training business professionals in financial services as well as real estate. Her passion lies in helping others tap into their own unique ability to achieve and exceed their goals. 

Mar 21 | Gail McCowan | Behavioral Interviewing

Behavioral interviewing is a crucial job-hunting skill, like most companies today use this method to determine “best fit.” The premise behind behavioral interviewing is that the most accurate predictor of future performance is the past performance in similar situations. Join us as Gail McCowan walks us through the basics of behavioral interviewing and how to best prepare for them.

Gail has been an adjunct instructor at Wake Tech since 2012. She helps job seekers gain a variety of critical employability skills through courses in LinkedIn, Social Media, Resume Development, and other job seeking skills. In addition, she is the Volunteer Coordinator at Dress for Success Triangle and was a volunteer career coach with them for many years. Her previous experience includes human resources positions in General Electric, and training, logistics, and industrial engineering assignments with IBM. She holds an MBA from UNC-Chapel Hill and a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Northwestern University.

Mar 28 | Londy Bracale | The Cambiare Career Management Seminar!  

The paradigm has changed in the workforce. The 2-5 year average job tenure is the current norm. This seminar will provide insight into what you need to succeed in this gig economy, to put you in control of your career! This seminar is designed for candidates in job transition, looking for more job satisfaction and increase happiness in their life, looking to completely change careers and want to control their careers.

Londy Bracale is an accomplished Sales Trainer, Strategist, and Educational Professional. He has developed an effective non-traditional sales and management method, delivering business results through evidence-based practice. He has taught at the university level, developed curriculum, and managed multiple training departments and hosts executive programs. His professional practice is rooted in psychology and human behavior that spans working with small business, fortune 500 corporations, and the federal government.

Trinity Baptist Church - Fellowship Hall
4815 Six Forks Rd, Raleigh, NC
Directions to Church
Church Campus Map

Day & Time:
9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Arrive early and stay after for valuable informal networking!

This is a moderated group. Professionals must attend one or more CTF sessions to join.

Enhance Your Resume, Market yourself, Explore A New Career

HRD (Human Resources Development) courses provide assistance for adults who are trying to find employment, transitioning back into the workforce, or working to redefine their professional niche in today's global market. HRD offers many relevant classes that will help equip you for success in your job search. 

What our students are saying...

I have accepted an offer from Cisco as a Marketing Manager in their Enterprise Networking group. You can say that “networking” will be my job and not only a means for career advancement!
I am really thankful to you and other leaders and participants of Career Transition Forum group for their tremendous support, encouragement, willingness to help, opening rolodex’s, and insights into the modern hiring process. I truly learned from the wonderful speakers you invited, and from others’ experiences.
I am happy to extend help to anyone in the group to the extent I can.
- Vivek B., CTF Alumni

Today, I landed a permanent position at IAT Insurance as a Technical Project Manager/Process & Change Manager.  I am really excited!  It's truly a dream job for me where I will use all of my certifications. I could not have done it without your support and advice! Especially these 2 simple steps that REALLY made me a stand-out candidate:

  1. Networked with employed people in my field (which led to a friendship with an IAT IT staff member --> which led to my sincere interest in IAT --> which led to a referral!)
  2. Shared stories about specific technical projects I managed that are directly related to projects that IAT is planning to undertake now. 

- Elizabeth R., CTF Alumni

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